Changing User Names

This is a call for developers and system designers to allow user names to change while maintaining the user’s account integrity. There are many instances where someone’s name might change, but issues seems to disproportionately affect women.

At my work, when a woman gets married, her system login gets updated with her new last name. However, not all internal systems are capable of accepting an updated user name. This causes the user to have a new account, and thus no access to her old data.

This seem abundantly silly, easy to plan for, and necessary so as to be inclusive to anyone undergoing a name change whether due to marriage, divorce, or other personal reason.

The Twitter model is representative of how this should work. Users can at any time change their user names or email addresses instead of having to create a new account or go through some process of trying to combine accounts. Developers and designers, take note!

Screen shot of the Fishy UX Twitter account settings page
Twitter account settings screen